Valentino Dixon: Drawing My Way To Freedom

Current Exhibition to Feature Works of the Artist, Exoneree and Criminal Justice Reform Advocate

by Tiffany Gaines

Valentino Dixon survived 27 years in prison because of the comfort he found in art. Convicted of a fatal shooting on Buffalo’s East Side, he spent hours illustrating golf courses that he had only ever seen in photographs. Dixon’s art ultimately set him free – a 2012 profile on his work in Golf Digest garnered national attention to his case, and in September 2018 he was exonerated. 

Valentino Dixon: Drawing My Way To Freedom, his first major exhibition in a museum, will opened at the Burchfield Penney Art Center at SUNY Buffalo State Friday, October 11 as part of M&T Second Friday.

The  event is free and open to the public.  The installation—landscapes, portraits and still life pieces—consists of works created over a seven-year span during his incarceration. The exhibition is presented by the Buffalo Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) in collaboration with the Burchfield Penney.

The public was also invited to hear Dixon share his story at an artist talk hosted by WGRZ-TV reporter-anchor Claudine Ewing, Thursday, October 10.

Drawing My Way to Freedom will be on view thru March 28, 2020,.

For more information go to 

Tiffany Gaines is a cultural writer and assistant content creator at the Burchfield Penney.